Citi Knowledge Center
Quick reads to keep you up-to-date on money matters.
Security tips

Tips to using your Debit / Credit Card safely

Card usage has replaced cash transactions in a big way in urban India during the last decade. And online shopping necessitates the usage of cards. While the card usage has increased, so has the frauds related to the cards.
They say most of the time, card frauds happen due to negligence of the card holder. So it is essential, that you are always on the vigil and keep an eye for any suspicious activity that happens in your accounts.

What can you do to keep the fraudsters at bay? Here are a few tips to help you use your plastic safely.

When you use your card for physical and online transactions...
Do’s

1. Change the PIN

Sign on the reverse of your card as soon as you receive it, activate it and change the PIN. Avoid easily guessed numbers like birthday or year.

2. Ensure you are alone at the ATM

Tell the next person to enter the room only after you have used your card.

3. Always double check

Verify the amount on the charge slip, sign on it and collect your card immediately after the transaction is over.

4. Watch the URLs

Carefully type the name of the site you are visiting and ensure it is the correct site.

5. Actively seek security.

Ensure any website that requires you to share your card information begins with https. Look out for a padlock or VeriSign insignia at the bottom of the page. Both indicate that the site is encrypted.

6. Understand what information sites need - and what they don't.

While completing an online shopping transaction, sites ask you for:

  • Credit card number
  • Expiration date
  • CVV code
  • Name
  • IPIN (Internet PIN) or OTP
  • Shipping Address

Enter these details only after ensuring you are in the correct page. There is no requirement for any other information.

7. Report lost card immediately

If your card is lost, stolen or misplaced contact Citibank immediately on the 24X7 CitiPhone. You must report the theft of your card to the police and lodge an FIR to avoid any liability from any misuse of your card.

Don’ts

1. Do not share card CVV number with anyone

Memorise the 3 digit CVV number on the back of the card and blank it with a permanent marker.

2. Do not leave your Card with anyone

Not with your relative, friend, or a waiter. Always keep track of the transaction alerts received on phone or email.

3. Never share your PIN with anyone

At fuel stations, restaurants or anywhere. Walk up to the card swipe machine if you have to.

4. Avoid using the ATM in the night

Especially when it’s not an emergency. Only use the ATM if it is well lit and has a guard present.

5. Never leave an incomplete transaction

Finish your transaction and leave only when “welcome screen” appears.

5. Think twice about shopping via public WiFi

Whenever you use wireless open networks at public places like airports, malls etc., you’re more vulnerable to cyber-attacks and so need to be more cautious about online transactions.

While you should be wary of fraudsters, there’s no reason to become paranoid. You be the judge when someone is being really helpful and when someone is trying to trick you. If you suspect anything is out of place, contact Citibank immediately on the 24X7 CitiPhone.